Famous People With Schizophrenia

When we talk of famous people with schizophrenia, John Nash, the American economist, mathematician and Nobel Prize winner in Economic Sciences who was the subject of the biographical drama ‘A Beautiful Mind’ is probably the first name that comes to our minds. Schizophrenia is a mental disorder characterized by abnormal social behavior due to which living a normal life becomes a challenge for those suffering from it. However, cases like those of John Nash provide inspiration to the sufferers and families that it is possible for such people to thrive and even achieve great success in life. American composer and jazz trumpeter Tom Harrell has struggled with schizophrenia for several years yet he went on to record on over 260 albums and has won multiple Trumpeter of the Year awards from different sources. Yet another notable personality who was schizophrenic was Eduard Einstein - son of famous physicist Albert Einstein. While it is true that being schizophrenic poses considerable challenges to an individual and might hamper their normal day-to-day life, the condition need not prevent the patient from living a fulfilling and successful life. This section provides you information about the life and works of famous people with schizophrenia.
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 1 
John Forbes Nash Jr.
(Mathematician)
John Forbes Nash Jr.
42
Listed In: Scientists
Birthdate: June 13, 1928
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Bluefield, West Virginia, United States
Died: May 23, 2015
The inspiration behind the movie A Beautiful Mind, John F. Nash was a legendary mathematician whose work in the area of game theory earned him the Nobel Memorial Prize in Economic Sciences. In his later years, he was riddled with mental illness. He later died in a car crash.
 2 
Peter Green
(Musician & Songwriter)
Peter Green
7
Listed In: Musicians
Birthdate: October 29, 1946
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Bethnal Green, London, England
Died: July 25, 2020

Peter Green was an English guitarist and singer-songwriter. Green is credited with founding the popular British-American rock band, Fleetwood Mac. He was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1998. Named in Rolling Stone's 100 Greatest Guitarists of All Time list, Green has influenced many other guitarists like Joe Perry and Gary Moore.

 3 
Clara Bow
(American Actress Who was a Big Star During Silent Era of the 1920s)
Clara Bow
3
Birthdate: July 29, 1905
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Brooklyn, New York, United States
Died: September 27, 1965
Clara Bow gained fame during the 1920s’ silent film era and then switched to "talkies" in 1929. Her performance in the movie It earned her the nickname The It Girl, and she soon became a sex symbol of the Roaring Twenties. Following her retirement, she started ranching in Nevada. 
 4 
Joey Ramone
(Lead vocalist of the punk rock band the Ramones)
Joey Ramone
13
Listed In: Singers
Birthdate: May 19, 1951
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Forest Hills, New York, United States
Died: April 15, 2001
Joey Ramone revolutionized punk rock with his band the Ramones. He was known for his distinctive hiccups, croons, and snarls, which he incorporated in his songs. He was also part of the activist group Artists United Against Apartheid. He died at 49, after a 7-year struggle with lymphoma.
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 5 
Zelda Fitzgerald
(Socialite & Referred to as 'The first American Flapper' by Her Husband 'F. Scott Fitzgerald')
Zelda Fitzgerald
15
Listed In: Miscellaneous
Birthdate: July 24, 1900
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Montgomery, Alabama, United States
Died: March 10, 1948

Zelda Fitzgerald was a painter, socialite, and novelist. Along with her husband Scott Fitzgerald, Zelda became a prominent personality of the Jazz Age. Renowned for her high spirits and beauty, she was named the first American flapper by Scott. For her work as a novelist and painter, Fitzgerald was posthumously made an inductee to the Alabama Women's Hall of Fame.

 6 
Bettie Page
(American Model who Gained Notoriety in the 1950s for her Pin-Up Photos)
Bettie Page
18
Listed In: Fashion
Birthdate: April 22, 1923
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Nashville, Tennessee, US
Died: December 11, 2008

Model Bettie Page was an iconic figure in pop culture in the 1950s. Considered a sex symbol, she was most popular for her pin-up photos. In 1955, she became one of the earliest Playmates of the Month for Playboy magazine. After a short but immensely successful modeling career, she converted to Christianity and quit modeling.

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 7 
Jim Gordon
(Musician)
Jim Gordon
6
Listed In: Musicians
Birthdate: July 14, 1945
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Los Angeles, California, United States
 8 
Blanche Monnier
(Prisoner)
Blanche Monnier
7
Listed In: Miscellaneous
Birthdate: March 1, 1849
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Poitiers, France
Died: October 13, 1913
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 9 
Vaslav Nijinsky
(Ballet Dancer, Choreographer and One of the Greatest Male Dancers of All Time)
Vaslav Nijinsky
7
Listed In: Dancers
Birthdate: March 12, 1889
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Kyiv, Ukraine
Died: April 8, 1950

Vaslav Nijinsky was a ballet dancer and choreographer. He is counted among the greatest male dancers of the early 20th century. He was known for the intensity of his characterizations. He was brilliant and could dance en pointe, a rare skill few male dancers of his era possessed. He suffered from mental health issues in his later life. 

 10 
Jake Lloyd
(Child Actor)
Jake Lloyd
23
Birthdate: March 5, 1989
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Fort Collins, Colorado, United States

Jake Lloyd is a former child actor best known for playing the young Anakin Skywalker in the film Star Wars: Episode I – The Phantom Menace. He retired from acting in 2001, later explaining that he quit acting due to harassment by the press and bullying at school. In 2020, it was stated that he is suffering from paranoid schizophrenia.

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 11 
Cheyenne Brando
(French Fashion Model and Daughter of Actor Marlon Brando and Actress Tarita Teriipaia)
Cheyenne Brando
12
Listed In: Fashion
Birthdate: February 20, 1970
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Tahiti, French Polynesia
Died: April 16, 1995

Cheyenne Brando was a French model and daughter of legendary American actor, Marlon Brando. Troubled by drug addiction and bouts of depression throughout her teenage and adult life, Cheyenne also struggled to cope with personal losses, such as the death of her partner Dag Drollet, who was fatally shot by her half-brother Christian. Brando committed suicide at age 25.

 12 
Richard Avedon
(American Fashion and Portrait Photographer)
Richard Avedon
4
Listed In: Photographers
Birthdate: May 15, 1923
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: New York City
Died: October 1, 2004
 13 
Camille Claudel
(French Sculptor Known for Her Work: ‘The Waltz’ and ‘The Mature Age’)
Camille Claudel
2
Birthdate: December 8, 1864
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Fère-en-Tardenois, France
Died: October 19, 1943

French sculptor Camille Claudel is also popularly known as legendary sculptor Auguste Rodin’s student, mistress, and muse. Claudel also contributed to many of Rodin’s masterpieces but never got any credit for it. After her relationship with Rodin soured, she became alienated and eventually died in an asylum.

 14 
William Chester Minor
(American Army Surgeon Known for Contributions to the Oxford English Dictionary)
William Chester Minor
2
Listed In: Physicians
Birthdate: June 22, 1834
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Sri Lanka
Died: March 26, 1920

William Chester Minor was an army surgeon and lexicographical researcher. He studied at Yale Medical School and earned a medical degree with a specialization in comparative anatomy. He then became an army surgeon. He was later committed to a London psychiatric hospital for many years as he suffered from paranoid delusions. He became a lexicographical researcher while incarcerated.  

 15 
Buddy Bolden
(Musical Artist)
Buddy Bolden
0
Listed In: Musicians
Birthdate: September 6, 1877
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: New Orleans, Louisiana, United States
Died: November 4, 1931
 16 
Robert M. Pirsig
(Writer, Philosopher)
Robert M. Pirsig
2
Birthdate: September 6, 1928
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Minneapolis, U.S.
Died: April 24, 2017
 17 
Jackson C. Frank
(Folk Musician )
Jackson C. Frank
3
Listed In: Musicians
Birthdate: March 2, 1943
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Buffalo, New York, United States
Died: March 3, 1999
 18 
Talal of Jordan
(King of Jordan Who Was Forced to Abdicate due to His Mental Illness)
Talal of Jordan
10
Listed In: Miscellaneous
Birthdate: February 26, 1909
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Mecca, Saudi Arabia
Died: July 7, 1972

Part of the Hashemite dynasty, Talal of Jordan reigned as the king of Jordan for a little over a year in the 1950s. The only son of Abdullah I, the first king of Jordan, he was forced to abdicate due to his mental illness. He died in a sanatorium in Istanbul.

 19 
Richard Brautigan
(Writer, Poet, Novelist)
Richard Brautigan
2
Listed In: Writers
Birthdate: January 30, 1935
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Tacoma
Died: September 14, 1984
 20 
Friedrich Hölderlin
(German Poet and Philosopher Best Known for His Novel 'Hyperion')
Friedrich Hölderlin
0
Listed In: Writers
Birthdate: March 20, 1770
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Lauffen am Neckar, Germany
Died: June 7, 1843

German lyric poet and dramatist Friedrich Hölderlin was a significant figure of German Romanticism. Initially pushed to join a Christian ministry by his mother, he later ditched the idea and was inspired by Greek mythology. He later suffered from schizophrenia and spent 36 years in a tower, later named the Hölderlinturm.

 21 
Nathaniel Ayers
(Musician)
Nathaniel Ayers
1
Listed In: Musicians
Birthdate: January 31, 1951
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Cleveland, Ohio, United States
 22 
Agnes Martin
(Painter)
Agnes Martin
1
Birthdate: March 22, 1912
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Macklin
Died: December 16, 2004

Agnes Martin was an American painter whose style was often considered minimalism although she considered herself an abstract expressionist. Martin's work served as an inspiration to several younger artists like Ellen Gallagher and Eva Hesse. In 1998, Agnes Martin was honored with the prestigious National Medal of Arts. Her life and career inspired documentaries like Agnes Martin: Between the Lines.

 23 
Robert Walser
(Writer)
Robert Walser
0
Listed In: Writers
Birthdate: April 15, 1878
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Biel/Bienne, Switzerland
Died: December 25, 1956
 24 
Sigrid Hjertén
(Swedish Modernist Painter)
Sigrid Hjertén
0
Birthdate: October 27, 1885
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Sundsvall, Sweden
Died: March 24, 1948

One of the pioneers of expressionism in Sweden, Sigrid Hjertén was the only female member of the artist group De Åtta. Initially a teacher of textile design, she later painted iconic works such as Atelierinteriör. She died of a failed lobotomy procedure to cure her schizophrenia.

 25 
Karl Maria Wiligut
(Austrian Occultist and Soldier)
Karl Maria Wiligut
3
Listed In: Leaders
Birthdate: December 10, 1866
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Vienna, Austria
Died: January 3, 1946

Following a 40-year stint with the German military, Karl Maria Wiligut retired to practice occult studies. He believed he belonged to a royal lineage and was later sent to an asylum for his schizophrenic beliefs. He later became a Nazi lieutenant-brigadier and joined Heinrich Himmler’s inner circle.

 26 
Émile Nelligan
(Canadian Poet)
Émile Nelligan
1
Listed In: Writers
Birthdate: December 24, 1879
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Montreal, Quebec, Canada
Died: November 18, 1941
Émile Nelligan was French-Canada’s one of the most beloved and admired poets. A hugely talented poet, Nelligan's literary career was short-lived as he was sent to mental asylum aged 20. He took French-Canadian poetry into the modern age and poetry inspired several music composers. His poems have become the subject of numerous films, novels, and a ballet and an opera. 
 27 
Daniel Paul Schreber
(German Judge and Author)
Daniel Paul Schreber
1
Listed In: Writers
Birthdate: July 25, 1842
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Leipzig
Died: April 14, 1911
 28 
Franz Xaver Messerschmidt
(German-Austrian Sculptor Best Known for His Series of Dramatic 'Character Heads')
Franz Xaver Messerschmidt
1
Birthdate: February 6, 1736
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Swabia, Germany
Died: August 19, 1783

German-Austrian Franz Xaver Messerschmidt was a court sculptor in Vienna but was later forced to move to Pressburg, now Bratislava, where he worked on a series of over 60 heads, made of either tin alloy or alabaster. The heads have peculiar expressions, but their meaning hasn’t yet been unearthed.

 29 
John Altoon
(Former abstract painter)
John Altoon
1
Birthdate: November 5, 1925
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Los Angeles, California, United States
Died: February 8, 1969
 30 
Sophie Podolski
(Former Poet, graphic artist known for The book Le pays où tout est permis (1972))
Sophie Podolski
0
Listed In: Writers
Birthdate: October 8, 1953
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Brussels, Belgium
Died: December 29, 1974

Belgian poet and graphic artist Sophie Podolski is best known for her only published book during her lifetime, Le pays où tout est permis. A patient of schizophrenia, she had been to psychiatric clinics and had issues with drugs. She eventually tried committing suicide and died 10 days later.

 31 
Uuno Kailas
(One of the Most Prominent Finnish Poet of the 1930s)
Uuno Kailas
1
Listed In: Writers
Birthdate: March 29, 1901
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Heinola
Died: March 22, 1933

Uuno Kailas was a Finnish writer, poet, and translator. He is often counted among the most important Finnish poets of the 1930s. He published an impressive collection of poetry and translations before succumbing to schizophrenia and tuberculosis at the age of 31.

 32 
Charmx
(Canadian Comedian, Gamer, Animator, and Former YouTuber)
Charmx
34
Listed In: YouTubers
Birthdate: September 30, 1994
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Ontario, Canada

Charmx is a Canadian comedian, gamer, animator, and former YouTuber. He is best known for his gaming and reaction videos. He came into prominence when he started posting a video series named YouTube Poops on his Charmx3 channel.